A new report claims that Google was after WhatsApp, but backed out as its excitement for the app diminished during the bidding process. 

WhatsApp Facebook

Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp was perhaps one of the biggest stories of the year, whichever way you look at it, but a new report claims that Facebook wasn’t the only suitor after the company.

A new report from The Inquirer now claims that the Mountain View based tech giant was willing to outbid Facebook’s offer of $19 billion, but got cold feet after its excitement died and bidding for the company went over $10 billion. This report claims that Google didn’t actually want to buy WhatsApp, but merely wanted Facebook to stay away from the acquisition.

It is said Google even tried to convince WhatsApp to remain independent, but to no avail. The team subsequently embraced Facebook’s generous offer of $19 billion in cash and stock and a place among the company board of directors for the founder Jan Koum.

CEO of Google, Larry Page, is believed to have written a letter to Koum claiming that WhatsApp is a threat to Facebook and going through with the acquisition would have serious repercussions on “how things play out for years to come.” Facebook and Google are known industry rivals and the acquisition of WhatsApp has certainly boosted Facebook’s value in the industry. Facebook however cannot rest easy after buying out WhatsApp and should be wary of the fact that it has to compete with the likes of Line and WeChat which are among the most popular third party instant messaging clients in the world today.

Source: The Inquirer